Dr. David Menton – If We Resemble Apes, Does That Mean We Evolved from Apes?

Anyone who has ever watched the monkeys and apes at a zoo couldn’t help but notice their resemblance to humans. By comparison, the bears in the zoo are not nearly as similar to humans as are the apes. Still, bears are warm-blooded mammals and thus are more similar to humans than are cold-blooded reptiles like the alligators. Alligators, however, do have legs and true lungs and thus are more similar to humans than are the fish. But even fish have bony vertebrae and thus are more similar to human than are the insects. And even insects are made up of many specialized cells and thus are more similar to humans than are the bacteria. Finally, all living things, including bacteria, have basically the same type of molecules that appear to be essential for life itself and share a common genetic code mechanism for their reproduction.

To continue reading Dr. Menton’s article, click here.

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Ken Ham and Dr. David Menton – Why Is the Scopes Trial Significant?

Christian morality on the whole seems to be rapidly declining in America and the western hemisphere, but did you know there is a connection between this and the 1925 Scopes trial?

In recent years, removing the Ten Commandments from public spaces has been big news. In fact, Christian morality on the whole seems to be rapidly declining in America and the western hemisphere: abortion is on the rise, divorce rates are climbing, gay marriage issues are increasing. But did you know there is a connection between these events and the 1925 Scopes trial?

In 2003, news reports featured many people demonstrating in front of the Alabama court building after the decision to remove the Ten Commandments monument as a public display. Some were lying prostrate on the ground, crying out to the Lord to stop this from happening. But how many of these people really understood the foundational nature of this battle?

If we asked the demonstrators, “Do you believe in millions of years for the age of the earth—and what about the days of creation in Genesis 1?” — well, our long experience in creation ministry indicates that the answer would most likely be something like “What? They’re taking the Ten Commandments out — why are you asking me irrelevant questions?”

To read the rest of Ken Ham and Dr. David Menton’s article, click here.

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Dr. David Menton – Is Evolution a Theory, a Fact, or a Law? – or None of the Above?

I have heard many Christians say that evolution doesn’t concern them because, after all, it’s “only a theory.” Presumably they think that the word “theory” means about the same thing as a “pipe dream.” But the term theory, at least as it applies to experimental science, has a much nobler meaning than that. A scientific theory is a careful attempt to explain certain observable facts of nature by means of experiments. Since many Christians have concluded that evolution is incompatible with the Biblical account of creation, we would do well to investigate if evolution is a fact or a theory — or perhaps neither.

There is a widespread misconception that good theories grow up to be facts and that the really good ones finally become laws. But these three categories of scientific description are neither directly related nor mutually exclusive. It often occurs that a single natural phenomenon can be described in terms of a theory, a fact, and a law — all at the same time!

To read the rest of Dr. Menton’s aricle, click here.

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Dr. Nathaniel Jeanson – Finding Adam in the Genome: Part 3 of a Response to Chapter 2 of Adam and the Genome

In this series, we have been examining the scientific claims in the book Adam and the Genome.1 In our previous post, we began to evaluate the genetic claims that one of the authors, Dennis Venema, makes in chapter two. Today’s post continues this discussion.

At the beginning of chapter two, Venema begins an extended analogy between language and genetics. His purpose is to show that evolutionary change bears strong resemblance to language change. Since few people would have a problem with the latter, Venema builds on this foundation to argue for the former.

Specifically, Venema thinks that we can trace common ancestry among species in the same way that we can trace common ancestry among languages. In other words, Venema thinks that the pattern of genetic differences is strong evidence in support of evolution.

To read the rest of Dr. Jeanson’s article, click here.

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Dr. David Menton – The Origin of Life

One of the most fundamental axioms of biology is that all life comes from preexisting life. Still, until the later part of the 19th century, life was believed to arise from nonliving matter by a process called “spontaneous generation.” Ancient Egyptians, for example, thought mice arose from the mud of the Nile. In 1600, J. B. Helmont even reported “proof” for the spontaneous generation of mice, claiming that if wheat, cheese, and soiled linen are placed together in a jar, mice will eventually appear! This idea of the spontaneous generation of life from nonlife was so deeply ingrained in biological thought that it took nearly 200 years of experimental evidence to completely disprove it.

In 1650, Francesco Redi, an Italian physician, proved that maggots come from living flies and not from lifeless meat as was widely believed. This was a serious blow to spontaneous generation, but when bacteria were later discovered, it was thought that at least microorganisms might arise from nonlife. This notion too was finally laid to rest in 1864 by the great scientist (and creationist) Louis Pasteur, who demonstrated that bacteria can only come from living bacteria. When Pasteur reported his results before the French Academy, he confidently declared that “never will the doctrine of spontaneous generation arise from this mortal blow.” Pasteur never dreamed that the widely discredited evolutionary ideas of his contemporary, Charles Darwin, would one day become widely accepted by the scientific community, reviving once again the notion of spontaneous generation. In his book, The Origins of Life, evolutionist Cyril Ponnamperuma said,

It is, perhaps, ironic that we tell beginning students in biology about Pasteur’s experiments as the triumph of reason over mysticism yet we are coming back to spontaneous generation, albeit in a more refined and scientific sense, namely to chemical evolution.

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Dr. Nathaniel Jeanson – Finding Adam in the Genome: Part 1 of a Response to Chapter 2 (and Chapter 4) of Adam and the Genome

This article series has been responding to Dennis Venema’s and Scot McKnight’s book Adam and the Genome.1 Our primary focus has been on Venema’s scientific claims. In our previous post, we explored chapter one which deals exclusively with nongenetic data. Venema’s remaining chapters dive into the subject of genetics. In this post, we begin exploring Venema’s evidences in chapter two, titled “Genomes as Language, Genomes as Books.”

Naturally, with a subject as technically complex as genetics, our task might seem daunting. Nevertheless, in previous posts, we made a critical observation that simplified our task. We discovered that evolutionists refuse to read young-earth creationist (YEC) literature because they think that YECs are liars. Consequently, when evolutionists cite evidence to support their claims, they effectively fit facts to conclusions.

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Jean O’Micks – Further Evidence That Homo naledi Is Not a Member of the Human Holobaramin Based on Measurements of Vertebrae and Ribs

Introduction

In the wake of a detailed discussion within creationist circles about the baraminic status of Homo naledi (McLain 2017; O’Micks 2016a, b, c 2017; Wood 2016a, b 2017), more evidence has accumulated that H. naledi indeed is a member of the Australopithecus baramin, and is not human. These previous analyses of measurements on H. naledi’s cranium (Berger et al. 2015; Laird et al. 2017), foot (Harcourt-Smith et al. 2015), hand (Kivell et al. 2015), upper limb (Feuerriegel et al. 2017), and thigh (Marchi et al. 2017) show that H. naledi either shows continuity with members of the Australopithecus baramin, or that it is not continuous with members of the human holobaramin. Despite the initial conclusion that H. naledi was likely to be a member of the human holobaramin based on craniodental characteristics alone (O’Micks 2016a; Wood 2016a), the addition of post-cranial characters cast this conclusion into doubt (O’Micks 2016b).

The vertebral column is a major characteristic of vertebrates in general, and especially in hominoid primates. It is responsible for upright posture and bipedal locomotion. Non-human primates are stiff-backed, whereas hominoid primates have a more mobile lower back, adapted to lordosis and erect posture, required for bipedalism (Williams et al. 2016). African great apes have funnel-shaped thoraces, which are narrow at the top, and are wide or flaring at the bottom, with a relatively short lumbar column. On the other hand, humans have a barrel-shaped thorax with a wider upper ribcage, with a narrow waist, atop a relatively longer lumbar vertebral column. The ribcage of H. naledi is distally wide, like what we see in Australopithecus species (Berger 2015). Humans also have elongated hind limbs, which make bipedalism possible (Williams et al. 2017). In humans, the first seven ribs are true ribs, ribs eight to ten are false ribs, and eleven and twelve are floating ribs. The number of lumbar vertebrae also vary in primates between four and nine (Gebo 2014).

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Tim Chaffey – Creation: The Longest Week Ever?

For more than 200 years, Christians have been trying to reinterpret the six days of Creation in Genesis 1 to make them align with millions of years. But every attempt has a fatal flaw.

“And God saw everything that he had made, and behold, it was very good. And there was evening and there was morning, the sixth day” (Genesis 1:31).
“The sixth day.” What does that phrase mean to you? More than 200 years ago, Christians began to question whether this day truly was the sixth day, instead of the six millionth or six billionth day. They were responding to an idea, popularized in the late 1700s, that our planet and universe are much older than Scripture indicates. They wondered where millions of years might harmonize with the Bible. So they scrutinized Genesis 1 and reinterpreted the days of Creation Week in a variety of ways.

But they didn’t recognize that each of these attempts to insert long ages into Scripture had fatal flaws (even beyond the alarming fact that they tried to change the original intent of the language). Most notably, they place death, suffering, and disease long before Adam and Eve sinned.

Yet you will still hear varieties of these views. What are we to make of them? Is there any justification for changing the meaning of the Bible’s first chapter?

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Simon Turpin – The Creation of Adam: Unique Revelation or Ancient Myth?

Introduction

It is widely known that the early chapters of Genesis do not stand alone in the history of the ancient Near East (ANE). Other texts parallel the biblical account of creation and the existence of similarities between Genesis, and ANE literature has led critical scholars to conclude that Genesis was dependent upon the Mesopotamian texts.

Today, however, there are many professing evangelical scholars who argue that the early chapters of Genesis were influenced by these ANE myths.

The points of similarity between Genesis 1–2 and other ANE accounts have led these evangelical scholars to conclude that Genesis is not historical but “is an ancient Near Eastern form of science.” In other words the role of these texts in the ANE was, as John Walton explains, “like science in our modern world—it was their explanation of how the world came into being and how it worked. . . . Mythology is thus a window to culture.” The connection then, for these scholars, between the biblical and the ANE worlds is that, just as with ANE literature, so Genesis 1–2 helps us “see how Israelites thought about themselves, their world, and their God.”4The similarities then are associated with the fact that the biblical and ANE accounts “share a conceptual world,” which is why Genesis 1–2 is seen as “ancient cosmology.” The similarities between these ANE texts and Genesis 1–2 have convinced many of these scholars that Adam never existed or that he is anything other than the first human, who was supernaturally created. These scholars believe their view of Adam is based on careful analysis of the ANE context of Genesis 1–2. For example, after describing several ANE texts about the creation of man, such as Atrahasis and Gilgamesh Epics, Denis Lamoureux states,

Clearly, these last three examples of the de novo creation of humans are similar to Genesis 2:7, where the Lord acts like a craftsman and forms Adam from the dust of the ground…So what exactly am I saying about Adam? Adam’s existence is based ultimately on an accident conceptualization of human origins: de novo creation. To use technical terminology, Adam is the retrojective conclusion of an ancient taxonomy. And since ancient science does not align with physical reality, it follows that Adam never existed.

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Lita Cosner – Would Christ Create Through Evolution?

In an April 2017 contribution to the BioLogos website,1 NT Wright argued that “If creation is through Christ, evolution is what you would expect”. However, the argumentation is fatally flawed by the assumption of evolution imported onto the text of Scripture.

Wright asserts, “We must somehow start with what we know of Jesus’ own vision of truth and the kingdom and power and ask what that might mean for creation itself.” One consequence, he suggests, is that “if creation comes through the kingdom bringing Jesus, we ought to expect it to be like a seed growing secretly.” He argues that even though most evolutionist scientists are motivated by a non-Christian worldview, they “nonetheless come up with a picture of Origins that looks remarkably like Jesus’ parables of the Kingdom: some seeds go to waste, others bear remarkable fruit; some projects start tiny and take forever, but ultimately produce a great crop; some false starts are wonderfully rescued, others are forgotten. Chaos is astonishingly overcome.”

However, Wright makes an elementary error when he goes to soteriological texts to inform his doctrine of creation, and uses those soteriological texts to override the plain meaning of the cosmological texts! I agree with Wright that our doctrine of Christ is important for our doctrine of creation—the key Christian contribution to the doctrine of creation is the assertion that Jesus is the agent of creation. However, understanding Christ as the Creator did not lead anyone in the church to suddenly take the timescale and mode of creation outlined in Genesis non-literally until after uniformitarian geologists and Darwinian biologists began to challenge the biblical view.

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